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Last Updated: Monday, 13 February 2006, 13:37 GMT
Neville hopeful on Villa takeover
By Ian Wilkerson

Aston Villa chairman Doug Ellis
Doug Ellis has been chairman at Villa Park since 1982
Aston Villa fan Michael Neville is still hopeful he can lead a takeover of the club, despite the 64m bid hitting a stumbling block over transfer funds.

Villa chairman Doug Ellis wants assurances the bid, made with property developers Luke and Brian Comer, will provide funding for new players.

Neville said: "Things are going on and I am optimistic about it but it could take a while.

"We have a plan to generate cash but it is taking a bit of time."

Neville has been in negotiations with Ellis since September and has said he aims to take the former European Cup winners into the Champions League in three years.

And he said he is prepared to be patient to ensure a deal can be thrashed out as he continues negotiations with financial group Rothschild, which is representing the club.

He said: "I know the process involved and it is not a five-minute thing.

"Although I am not privy to everything at the club, I do not believe there is any other interest.

"It will take a bit of time but we are working on it at the moment and remain optimistic. We would still love to take the club over."

Ellis has been chairman at Villa Park since 1982 and currently owns a 39% share in the club, with access to another 12%.

The bid will buy his shares and those of the other main shareholder, former Watford chairman Jack Petchey.




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